A number of sexual health services will soon be brought together as part of a new integrated service in Calderdale.
Sexual health services will continue to be provided by Calderdale and Huddersfield Foundation Trust after Calderdale Council invited bids to run the service through a competitive tender process. It will provide the same high level of support for sexual health needs, and ensure that Calderdale residents have the best information available to make decisions about and take care of their sexual health.
The service will also bring together a number of areas of sexual health, such as testing, treatment and prevention, which will not only save money, but also provide a more accessible, streamlined service. It will develop a closer link with GPs and pharmacies, and focus on prevention activities such as outreach work in communities and working with schools.
Residents will receive quick and easy access to the most appropriate treatment, both in a town centre location and at sites in the local community. The new service will provide greater choice of where to access services and the ability to carry out some from home, for example, home testing for some sexually transmitted infections, including chlamydia and HIV.
In Calderdale we already work towards the prevention of sexually transmitted infections. We are better than average in our screening coverage for chlamydia in under 25s, and are in line with national figures for the detection of chlamydia in over 25s.
Calderdale has low rates of HIV, but due to the rates being low some cases have been diagnosed late. Having a more joined up service will allow knowledge and expertise in this area to be passed on, which should in turn improve our diagnosis rates.
The teenage conception rates have consistently been reducing, but to ensure this decline continues, the new service will bring together prevention activities, support and treatment services, so all young people have access to the support they need to prevent unwanted pregnancies.
Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health, Wellbeing and Engagement, Cllr Simon Young, said:
“It’s important that people know how to go to seek help and advice on sexual health issues. Many find it a hard subject to talk about, so we’re trying to make the whole process easier and simpler, keeping people well informed and safe.
“The support available through this new integrated service will address the sexual health concerns people have and also assist them to take responsibility and care of their own sexual health.”
For more information about sexual health services visit www.calderdale.gov.uk and search for sexual health, or for help and advice call 01422 261370